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Green Paper on forest protection and information: Preparing forests for climate change ANNUAL CONFERENCE of the European Forest Institute 15 September 2010 Dresden Ernst Schulte, European Commission, DG Environment Afforestation Cork production

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Green Paper on forest protection and information: Preparing forests for climate changeANNUAL CONFERENCEof the European Forest Institute15 September 2010Dresden

Ernst Schulte, European Commission, DG Environment

slide2

Afforestation

Cork production

Regulation on monitoring of atmospheric pollution

Green Paper on forest

protection

& information

EU Forestry Strategy

Rural Development

1957

1987

1992

1998

2003

2006

Forest

Action Plan

+

Stronger RDR

+

LIFE+

Regulation

European Communities

No systematic approach to forestry

Forest Focus

Regulation

Regulations on forest fire protectionand monitoring

Forestry measures

related to CAP reform

EU Involvement in forest issues: Historical Overview

2010

European Commission, DG Environment — Unit B1

basis of the green paper
Basis of the Green Paper
  • EU Forest Action Plan
    • Key action 6 : EU compliance with UNFCCC/Kyoto Protocol +

adaptation to the effects of climate change

    • Key action 8 : Work towards a European Forest Monitoring System
    • Key action 9: Enhance the protection of EU forests
  • Commission White Paper on adaptation to climate change – COM(2009)147
    • Asks for establishing an EU Framework for Action,
    • Launching a debate on forest protection and information and
    • Adapting the EU Forestry Strategy
what is at stake
What is at stake ?
  • Trees and soil as sinks or sources of carbon
  • Output of forest products that can act as sink during their useful life
  • High expectations for bio-energy supply, especially with current bio-energy debate
  • Ecological functions that are essential to the earth’s life supporting systems (70% of species threatened by loss of their habitat)

Protecting forests =

both mitigation of and adaptation to climate change

slide5

Functions of EU forests

“Diversity supports multifunctionality”

  • Socio- Economic functions :
    • Forest based industry = 10 % of EU manfacturing/2.5 million jobs
    • Large downstream value chain
    • Possible imbalance supply/demand > bio-energy 2020
    • Local importance on non wood forest products
    • Important landscape element (tourism/property value)
    • « Green infrastructure » protects settlements
  • Environmental functions – ecosystem services:
    • Forests protect soil
    • Forests protect water quality and regulate water quantity
    • Forests are a major repository of terrestrial biodiversity
    • Forests regulate climate and weather
    • Forests as carbon stocks
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Forest Protection Challenges

  • Forest fires , mainly in Southern Europe
  • Storms and windthrow more frequent
  • invasive alien species, incl. exotic trees, new pests
  • Fragmentation of ecosystems and holdings
  • Changes in water regime
  • Excessive game density
  • Decline of genetic resources
  • Scarcity of undisturbed areas
  • Impacts of forest management
  • Forest « dieback » at regional level

loss of biodiversity and carbon

forest functions at risk

impacts of climate change on forests
Impacts of climate change on forests
  • Increase in water stress
  • Increased risk of storm damage
  • Increased fire risk in terms of frequency and scale
  • Changes in nutrient balance in soils
  • Northward/altitude migration of tree species as well as other organisms
  • Increase in insect outbreaks , e.g. of bark beetles
  • Increase of pests
  • Forest dieback, including damage caused by game and invasive alien species

Rapid changes may affect ecosystem stability and forest functions

tools available now

KIPKE

BOB

BOB

KIPKE

KIPKE

BOB

BOB

KIPKE

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

KIPKE

BOB

KIPKE

BOB

BOB

KIPKE

BOB

KIPKE

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

GRAPHICS

2000

2000

2000

2000

2001

2001

2001

2001

Tools available now

EU policies: EU Forest Strategy, FAP, CAP (rural development), Natura Directives, Forest based industries, FP7, climate policy, energy, plant health, etc

National policies: National and regional forest programmes, including forest protection plans, national forest inventories, management requirements, legal provisions, etc

Forest management: afforestation, fire and storm prevention & restoration, overall planning with the aim to guarantee multi-functionality of forests

current forest information sources

NFIs

Forest types (EEA)

Current forest information sources

IACS

European Forest

Data Centre

&

European Forest

Information

and Communication

Platform

Forest condition

Forest classification

future forest information needs
Future forest information needs

Possible forest reporting requirements after 2013 could target on:

  • A harmonization of definitions and forest inventory systems which assures compatibility and comparability
  • An agreement on a forest typology
  • Assuring continuity of the forest conditionmonitoring, including information on climate (carbon contents of soils), biodiversity (incl. Wilderness and forest fragmentation aspects) and biomass
  • Assuring continuation of efficient forest fire monitoring and disaster prevention
recent relevant council conclusions

Recent relevant Council conclusions:

International biodiversity beyond 2010 of 22 December 2009

Biodiversity post-2010 of 15 March 2010

forest fire prevention within the European Union of 26 April 2010

Preparing forests for climate change: Forest protection and information in the EU of 11 June 2010

Mar-14

DG Environment — Unit B1

11

where are we
Where are we ?

International forest protection conference, Valsain/Spain,

April 2010

Green Week and forest side session of 3 June 2010

Public consultation on the Green Paper (ended in July 2010)

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/forests/fprotection.htm

Public consultation on biodiversity (ends 22 October 2010)

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/consultations/biodecline.htm

green paper public consultation

Green Paper public consultation

254 replies to the consultations were regrouped into the following categories

Business and industry (48)

Governmental and public bodies (55)

NGOs (40)

Private and forest owners (90)

Research and academia (21)

Analysis started in September 2010

Results expected end of 2010/beginning of 2011

Mar-14

DG Environment — Unit B1

13

a policy process
A POLICY PROCESS
  • Studies: storms, forest fires, forest protection, dieback, protective functions, biotic agents, …
  • Valsain Declaration on forest protection of 6 April 2010
  • Council conclusions, Forest Strategy and Forest Action Plan
  • Opinions/resolutions from the Parliament, CoR, EESC
  • Report on public consultation (2010/2011)
  • White paper on forest protection and information (2011)
  • Legislative proposal (2012)
  • update of the EU Forest Strategy on climate related aspects
thank you for your attention
Thank you for your attention !

Mar-14

DG Environment — Unit B1

15